Amelia’s Birthday Lesson on Matter
Today is Amelia’s birthday. She would be eleven years old.
I wonder what she would look like.
I wonder if her laugh would still sound the same.
I wonder if her eyes would still twinkle the way they did when I last looked into them.
I wonder if her skin would still have that Heaven-sent smell it had before she was really sick.
I wonder if she would still hate baths.
I wonder if she would still find comfort in the song I wrote for her.
I wonder if she would still smile over Dr. Seuss books even though she’d be too old for them. (Is it even possible to be too old to enjoy Dr. Seuss?!)
I wonder if she’d still have that sixth sense about people, instinctively knowing which ones were the real deal and which were the phonies who didn’t really love her exactly the way she was or know what to do with her.
I wonder if her hair would still be as curly.
I wonder if she would still wear glasses.
I wonder if she would still get that contented look as she sat back and just studied the people she loved, watching as we talked and laughed and included her in conversation.
I wonder if she would still be as proud of herself when she tackled something new and look up at us with that “Did you see that, Mama? I did that!!!” face.
I wonder if she would still pat us on the back as a way of saying, “I love you.”
I wonder if she would still be astonishing us with all she could do out of sheer force of will.
I wonder if she would still love what we’ve come to call ‘Amelia Days’ where the skies are blue and the breeze is crisp and everything seems right with the world.
I wonder if she gets a birthday party in Heaven or if she’s too busy hanging out with Jesus even to know that eleven years ago today is when our Heavenly Father chose to send her down to us, even though He knew then what we didn’t: that it would just be for four short, long, blessed, difficult, heart-breaking and heart-filling years and that then He would heal her precious body by taking her Home.
December is one big run-on sentence for me as I know it is for many, and these past two weeks have been a ridiculous roller coaster of super high highs and some stomach-churning curves I didn’t expect. In the end, the hope and the gratitude win out, it’s where I always end up; but still now and then the swoons come. Not as often or as long-lasting as past swoons, but they come. They’re like a big Texas rainstorm that seems to have been given the instruction, “Go big, or go home. But if you’re gonna go big, don’t just go big; come out of nowhere, go big, and then be done and gone just as fast as you started.”
Precious Amelia, there’ve been some storms interspersed among all the beautiful ‘Amelia Days’ of late. Your name is going through a bit of a popularity surge, or maybe I’m just noticing it more. Every time I do, I wonder if that Amelia’s middle name is as pretty as yours. I remember so, so much. Oh, there was beauty and goodness and sweetness, but oh there was heartache. That’s not what lives at the top of my mind, though. What does? That you made all our lives richer by being here, Pooter Bear. We are grateful to God for you.
There’s so much I wonder about, but then there’s so much that I don’t wonder about at all. I don’t wonder whether you knew you were loved. I don’t wonder whether you are fully healed now. I don’t wonder why your life was the way it was because what I care about is that you were here, and I got to be your mama. You mattered to me then and you still matter to me now and you will matter to me ever more … but do you know what? More than how you matter to me or to Daddy or to your grandparents or to your aunts and uncles or to your cousins … more than any of that is how you matter to God. He chose to create you because He knew the world needed Amelia Katherine Robison to be part of it. He made you, and therefore you matter. To Him, to us, to everyone who knew you, to everyone who has known about you in all the times since.
You matter because He created you.
But that’s what He wants us all to know about all of us, isn’t it? That we matter because He made us. We matter to other people and we matter for a whole slew of reasons, but the main point of this whole big thing is that each one of us matters because the God of the universe chose to create us and breathe us into His world. We wouldn’t be here without that truth.
You wouldn’t have lived those four years and (almost) four months if that one fact hadn’t been the truth. I can’t even imagine that. I love you beyond big time, baby girl.
Happy birthday in Heaven, Amelia. Go big because you are Home.